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Worldwide IT spending to grow 9% in 2021, Gartner

Worldwide IT spending is projected to total $4.2 trillion in 2021, an increase of 8.6% from 2020, according to the latest forecast by Gartner, Inc.

“Technology spending is entering a new build budget phase,” said John-David Lovelock, distinguished research vice president at Gartner. “CIOs are looking for partners who can think past the digital sprints of 2020 and be more intentional in their digital transformation efforts in 2021. This means building technologies and services that don’t yet exist, and further differentiating their organization in an already crowded market.”

As many companies still suffer revenue declines, IT spending is accelerating ahead of revenue expectations. Boards and CEOs are much more willing to invest in technology that has a clear tie to business outcomes, and less so for everything else. For example, the IT services segment is among the top three highest growth areas for 2021 primarily due to a boost in infrastructure-as-a-service spending that supports mission critical workloads and avoids high on-premises costs. The IT services segment is forecast to total $1.2 trillion in 2021, an increase of 9.8% from 2020 (see Table1).

Worldwide IT Spending Forecast (Millions of U.S. Dollars)

  2020 Spending 2020 Growth (%)   2021 Spending 2021 Growth (%)   2022 Spending 2022 Growth (%)  
Data Center Systems 178,466 2.5 191,648 7.4 201,659 5.2
Enterprise Software 529,028 9.1 598,957 13.2 669,114 11.7
Devices 696,990 -1.5 793,973 13.9 800,172 0.8
IT Services 1,071,281 1.7 1,176,676 9.8 1,277,228 8.5
Communications Services 1,396,287 -1.4 1,444,980 3.5 1,481,878 2.6
Overall IT 3,872,052 0.9 4,206,234 8.6 4,430,051 5.3

“Digital transformation can no longer be purchased overnight, and global IT spending projections reflect that,” said Lovelock. “As the world continues to open back up, enterprises will invest in tools that support innovation, anywhere operations and employee productivity and trust.”

Learn to make faster, smarter decisions – and generate stronger performance – by reinventing where, when and how work is done in the Gartner Future of Work Resource Center.

Additional details are also available in the complimentary Gartner webinar “The Gartner IT Spending Forecast, 2Q21 Update: Build Budgets Taking Off.”

Gartner’s IT spending forecast methodology relies heavily on rigorous analysis of sales by thousands of vendors across the entire range of IT products and services. Gartner uses primary research techniques, complemented by secondary research sources, to build a comprehensive database of market size data on which to base its forecast.
CT Bureau

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